Howl’s Moving Castle: How to Make a House a Home



Howl's Moving Castle G.P. Avants


I need to thank my friend and fellow co-founder of God Among Geeks, Rudy for highly encouraging me to sample different genres of comics, movies, TV shows, and animated features. That’s really how we roll with our blog. I love the times when he adds must see features on my to do list. I have been nudged out of my creative comfort zone (if that is really reality or not) and into new and exciting stories that just beyond my horizon. (It makes me feel like a journalist on assignment.)

Mia and Howl

So, that is how I was first drawn into anime. Teaching media in high school, I have often heard my students refer to Studio Ghibli and their award-winning films. One of their most famous animated features is Howl’s Moving Castle. Right from the start I knew that each step this enchanted edifice took that adventure was sure to follow. My son, Ryan just happened to leave an entire collection of their movies in our library, so that was a hint I should start watching anime.

Broken Howl

Howl is a young man who is under a fearful enchantment. Because of his state he has created a house that is never in the same place twice. It not only moves in the physical plane, by magically by the turn of a wheel, it can turn up in your very neighborhood. Howl’s castle blends in, but always just out of reality. As wild and unbelievable as Howl’s castle is on the outside it is mirrored by the unkempt and disshelved state of the house within. That is until a young girl stumbles upon Howl’s castle in order to find her own way.  We find out that Howl’s is a tormented soul. His family is fractured and day-by-day his memories are fading. When Sophie’s simple kindness and compassion comes into that odd house, the first steps begin to change it into a real loving home. She shows the power of a friend who is willing to lay down a life for another. I would say that was very Biblical.


What really makes a house a home?  A united family can turn a simple abode into a wondrous and magical castle. You don’t have to have a lot on the bank to do this. Thank the Lord that He is the real glue to keep diverse people maybe as opposite that can be, together. In a time when homes are rare to see intact, allowing Jesus into your family unit speaks volumes.

Howl's magic


Might I add that I have been blessed by the term “framily”. These are friends who have become close, and in many ways are more like a family than our flesh and blood family. Thank you to Dave, Jessica, Curtiss, Gabrielle, Jerry, Carrie, Pete, Tiffany, Jeg, Nancy, Chris and Katherine for being our small group framily. My fellow bloggers at God Among Geeks (who are now venturing into a podcast at Neekology 101: Rudy, John, and my brother Ron, are my brothers who are closer than blood. Thank you again for taking this crazy journey at the close of this year into the next.  And if you, friend, have a family or desire to start one, consider who is the real head, heart, and soul of your personal moving castle. Jesus is the family that makes all families and framilies possible.




7 Comments Add yours

  1. jdpepe says:

    It’s good you are branching out. But out of all of us I think you do that the most. Keep picking new things to write about brother and God will find the audience.


    1. gpavants says:

      We all push each other in directions to help us grow. In the vein of the Toby MCGuire, Spider-Man’s Russian landlord, “Are your pieces done yet?”


  2. D.M. Salazar says:

    Good job as always brother! I’m not an anime guy but a few more blogs like this one and I may have to check it out. And I totally agree with you, if not for Jesus who knows where our “framily” would be.


    1. gpavants says:

      And we are blessed to have you and Jessica as part of ours.


    2. gpavants says:

      Yeah, I wasn’t sure how I would feel about anime either, but after living in Asia and working with teens who love it, I realize there is a door there.


  3. What a delightful post! Thanks for sharing!


    1. gpavants says:

      Thank you for following. Hope to hear from you. Do you have any other Anime you recommend we should cover?


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